The Colorado Rapids arrived in Las Vegas on Wednesday for five days in the city, with a scrimmage to follow against UNLV on Friday and an exhibition match, the Las Vegas ProSoccer Challenge, on Sunday against Chivas USA.
A morning flight out of DIA was taken by the team, with appoximately 80 bags in tow, including team gear and personal luggage, for the players, coaches and staff. After getting settled in the hotel for a few hours, the team held a 4pm PT practice at UNLV's Peter Johann Memorial Field.
Having had a day off on Tuesday, the practice ran slightly longer, with fitness and strengthening after practice taking the session to nearly two hours. The structure began similarly to many other sessions during preseason, with warmups followed by passing drills.
The group then split into three teams, first for some small-sided, small field games, then moving to a larger space for a possession and counterattacking-focused game.
The team wound down the session with light jogging and a core workout led by Athletic Trainer Jaime Rojas. The players will not have much down time, as tomorrow's session comes earlier, starting at 10am on the same field at UNLV.
ALMOST EVERYONE IN VEGAS
While the trip to Houston earlier in preseason was done in two groups, today's trip saw nearly the whole preseason camp take off out of Denver and switch location to Las Vegas. Only a few people stayed behind: injured players Davy Armstrong, Danny Mwanga and Brian Mullan, while Kory Kindle and Vicente Sanchez attended to personal matters. Sanchez arrived in Las Vegas later in the day, on the same flight as Jose Mari, who finished his medical examinations earlier on Wednesday.
UNLV AT THE PRACTICE
For a good portion of today's session, Friday's opponents, UNLV, watched the professionals train. The college team stayed on the sidelines and watched for about 45 minutes (with the coaches staying longer) before taking off. Perhaps they were just making sure the Rapids didn't do too much damage - Colorado is training on UNLV's match field.
SIGNING FOR FANS
Following practice, the Rapids players stopped and signed autographs for the many kids and families that watched the session. The practices are all open to the public this week, and the players will sign more autographs for people that come out to watch. The Rapids are on UNLV's Johann Field for practice at 10am on Thursday and Saturday, and for a 2pm scrimmage on Friday.